Navan, ON – After losing both matchups to the Navan Grads in the preseason, the Ottawa Jr. Senators used that as fuel to emerge victorious on Sunday, improving to 4-0 on the season with a 3-0 win.
Alex Pineau got the scoring started as he pinched in from the point to beat Grads starter and the reigning CCHL Player of the Week, Ben West, just over 2:30 into the game.
The Jr. Senators continued their torrid start as Philippe Jacques finished off a beautiful passing play on a man advantage from Thomas Freel and Simon Isabelle to have the red, white, and blue up by a pair just five minutes into the contest.
The momentum carried into the second where the Jr. Senators found themselves on another powerplay and Jacques was able to rip a wrister over the glove of West for his second of the game. The tally for Jacques brought him into a tie for the league lead-in goals and powerplay goals.
“It’s a lot of fun on that (powerplay) unit,” said Forward Philippe Jacques. “We complement each other really well and there’s much more to come. I’ve got a lot of confidence in myself with the work I did over the summer to improve a bunch of aspects of my game. I worked on my shot and speed, which made me realize the type of player I want to become and is going to allow me to score more goals this year.”
With the Jr. Senators playing sound defensive hockey, life was made easy for starter William Desmarais who posted his first shutout since the 2019-2020 season.
“I’m pretty happy about it,” explained Goaltender William Desmarais. “You want the first one out of the way, we got the team for it and we played a great game. The defence played great. They cut off all the passes through the middle and made my job really easy, so big props to them.”
As the Jr. Senators notch another victory into the win column, they see their record improve to 4-0 on the season. It’s a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since the 2015-2016 edition of the Jr. Senators began the year 6-0.
“It’s obvious that I’d rather win than lose, but at the end of the day I’m just focused on our process,” described Head Coach Kyle Makaric. “We’re building every single game, whether it’s details, faceoffs, or the play away from the puck. There’s always something to work on with the guys. No question we’re happy with the results, but back to work tomorrow in preparation for the showcase.”
The aforementioned William Desmarais stopped all 27 shots he faced for his second win of the season, while Ben West turned aside 24 of 27.
The Jr. Senators went 2-for-6 on the man advantage while the Grads went 0-for-6.
The Ottawa Jr. Senators return to the ice on Saturday for the first of three on the CCHL Thanksgiving Showcase, taking on the upstart Cornwall Colts with puck drop scheduled for 7:00 PM. Note that all three Jr. Senators games this weekend will be played at the Bell Sensplex with all the action being streamed with Mason Detre, Davide Disipio, and Ryan Woods on the Jr. Senators Broadcast Network at Mixlr.com/OJSradio and Hockey TV.